ARP 029 - How to buy a MSR off the Shelf

Reed & Steve discuss what to consider when buying a factory AR-15 Rifle or Carbine.

Welcome to episode #29 of the AR15 Podcast.  I’m your host Reed Snyder and joining me tonight as Co-host is Steve, from Gun Guy Radio. This is THEE podcast about your favorite black rifle! This show is for you; whether you're building your first AR or you’ve been building ARs for years. There’s something we can all do to take our black rifle to the next level.

BREAKING NEWS: FRN breaking news that is secret for now...but here is something that isn't a secret:  Otis has signed on to provide us with 3 months of weekly giveaways of their BONE tool and bottles of their O12 carbon remover.  Have also indicated they will provide 3 months of weekly giveaways of their new RipCord bore cleaning system that was announced first here on the AR15 podcast at the NRA show.  Waiting on retail packaging and will send them to us.  Right now we are working on a possible discount code or link on our website, but for now visit Otis Technologies at for all of your gun cleaning needs.  Make sure you tell them you heard about them from the AR15 podcast and the Firearms Radio Network!

AR-15 Training Tip of the Week: This week’s tip is for all of you who shoot with some sort of optic attached to your AR.  I have heard many people say they have a difficult time shooting through a red dot/holographic optic (AimPoint/EOTech) with both eyes open.  This tip will help train you to master this art.  If your optic has a non-opaque front lens cover (most Aimpoints do) close the cover with the optic turned on.  Aim your rifle at your target and you will see the red dot against the dark background.  Look at the target with both eyes and your brain will magically superimpose the red dot on the target even though you can't see through the optic.  Try it to see and you will be a believer.  If you don't have a front lens cover, tape or cover the front lens in some fashion with a dark object and it will work the same.  Shoot like this and you will soon learn to shoot with an optic with both eyes open.  Your brain will make it so you won't even notice that the front lens cover is closed.

TP hosted by Greg “the bomb” Bakken on the FRN and his Training trick of the week. or search iTunes for Tactical Paradise.

Main Topic:

Overview - Buying off the Shelf:

  • When building isn’t what you want to do

Who can I trust - Thoughts on quality:

  • name brands vs upstarts
  • track record and history
  • users are a great resource
  • best 2 out of 3

Who is making my MSR - Do your research:

  • take time to look things over
  • look past the receiver (pull it apart and look at the bolt carrier, gas key staking) (ferrari/volkswagen beetle comparison)
  • know the basics then ask questions
  • think about your needs
  • be careful of Frankenstein rifles pieced together with sub-par parts (often found at gun shows); frankenstein rifles aren't bad if they are made from quality parts

How much should I pay - Be informed:

  • comparison shop
  • look at alternative suppliers
  • consider cost/benefit analysis

Can I modify my store bought MSR - Things to consider:

  • this is not the end
  • look over your warranty
  • find a gunsmith if you have doubts
  • you are the master of your build

Listener Feedback:

Joel: Reed, If you're looking for an AR chambered in .243 Winchester, check out the LMT MRP rifle.  They have a barrel changing system that lets you quickly change between .243, .260 Rem, .338 Federal, 7mm-08 Rem, and 6.5 Creedmoor.

Spencer in Smyrna: Hey guys,Just a note about the email on hunting guns that use AR mags from the last episode.  You may want to have him take a look at the Mossberg MVP series of bolt-guns.  I don't know if they are available in Canada (don't see why not), but they use standard AR mags. They are the only ones out there that do, as far as I know though.  I do know that Mini-14s definitely have their own proprietary magazines.

James:  Hi guys! Just wanted to thank you for for your help with understanding STANAG magazines for AR's. to follow up on AR's being a Restricted Firearm here in Canada and not allowed for hunting, I have found that the IWI Tavor TAR-21 is an un-restrict long gun here and therefore legal to hunt with and uses STANAG magazines and more from the AR platform. Please keep up the great work ! FIVE Stars !!!!!

Jim: ARP024 broadcast discussion topic: Compare & contrast cold forged, button rifled and cut rifled barrels relative to quality, accuracy, durability, etc.  Discuss the rifling twist ratio.  Discuss the Adcor Defense uppers with their innovative features and claimed highly accurate results.

Chad: Hey guys, wanted to say thank you for listening and doing a show about the grendel.  Didn't mean to come off as chastising.  Great show and you just flew off the charts for me.  Would like to point out that the grendel is still supersonic at 1200yrds and I think also does well as a hunting cartridge.  Thanks for listening and keep up the good work!

iTunes Review:

Plate Carrier Giveaway:

Let me know why you think you need a new plate carrier, send me a picture via email showing me the sad state of your current plate carrier to to enter our drawing for a brand new (with tag still attached) Condor Compact Plate Carrier in Coyote Tan courtesy of Brad from the FRN IT Team.